Climate Assembly UK reaches the final stage of its deliberations this weekend, as its members gather online for the last time to finalise the recommendations they will present to the six commissioning parliamentary select committees.

The final weekend of the Assembly, originally planned for March, was suspended and moved online to virtual video conferencing due to the outbreak of coronavirus. In this final session, the Assembly members will check over and finalise their recommendations and have an opportunity to add anything else they think Parliament and Government should consider on the path to net zero.

Assembly members will have the opportunity to reflect on the lifestyle changes brought about by the coronavirus outbreak, and the links to the topics the assembly has already discussed including what we buy, how we travel and in the home.

Chris Stark, one of the Assembly’s Expert Leads and Chief Executive of the UK Committee on Climate Change will lead a session on Saturday afternoon on how coronavirus has affected our lives.

The members of Climate Assembly UK have worked really hard since January to arrive at a set of recommendations to Parliament – their continued commitment to the Assembly as it has moved online has been fantastic. This final weekend is about confirming the Assembly’s recommendations and finalising what they will say in their report. I’m really excited to see what the Assembly has come up with. Since the Assembly last met face to face in Birmingham, everyone has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. We’re not drawing direct links between coronavirus and climate change, but we wanted to give Assembly members a chance to reflect on the staggering changes to our way of life during the lockdown. So in this final weekend Assembly members will discuss their experience of coronavirus and let Parliament know whether it has changed views on how to achieve net zero.

Chris Stark, CEO of the Committee on Climate Change and one of the Expert Leads

Chris Stark’s presentation will be livestreamed here at 3pm. All presentations from previous weekends, including slides and transcripts, are archived on the website.

Climate Assembly UK brings together people from across the UK and all walks of life to discuss what can be done by members of the public to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by the Government’s legally-binding target of 2050.

The members were drawn from different regions, age groups, gender, ethnicity and attitudes to climate change across the UK to represent the makeup of the UK’s population. Members have committed considerable time, energy and determination throughout the process. The final report is now expected to be presented to the six commissioning select committees before Parliament’s summer recess.

Ahead of the final weekend, Chair of the Treasury Committee, Mel Stride MP, recorded a video message for Assembly Members

It’s been a matter of great pride to me that the Treasury select committee has been one of the six committees that commissioned the work the Climate Assembly UK has been carrying out. "The Government has very significant aspirations for tackling climate change, including the achievement of net zero by 2050. But we need to know exactly how we’re going to get there – how we’re going to achieve that vital goal - and that’s where the assembly’s work has been so important. When the report is published, I will make sure that every member of the Treasury select committee receives a copy of it and I will further make sure that the Government and ministers are fully aware of all the recommendations made by the assembly. I thank the assembly members again for all the huge amount of work they have put into this really important project – important for all of us, important for a green economy and for making sure that we leave a better planet for our children and all who follow.

Mel Stride MP, Chair of the House of Commons Treasury Select Committee